1 The Past is dark with sin and shame,
The Future dim with doubt and fear;
But, Father, yet we praise Thy name,
Whose guardian love is always near.
2 For man has striven, ages long,
With faltering steps to come to Thee,
And in each purpose high and strong
The influence of Thy grace could see.
3 He could not breathe an earnest prayer,
But Thou wast kinder than he dreamed,
As age by age brought hopes more fair,
And nearer still Thy kingdom seemed.
4 But never rose within his breast
A trust so calm and deep as now; --
Shall not the weary find a rest?
Father, Preserver, answer Thou!
5 'Tis dark around, 'tis dark above,
But through the shadow streams the sun;
We cannot doubt Thy certain love;
And Man's true aim shall yet be won!